by Matt Weik
Work is stressful. It’s long. Your boss is an asshole. Your co-workers are lazy and complacent. And you go through the day praying five o’clock comes soon so you can get the hell out of there and to the gym to release the stress and frustration of the day. You want to stay healthy, but the stress at work is mounding up, and you don’t know what to do about it. What if you could add some items to your office that can help improve your health and also minimize some of the stress you are feeling?
In this article, we will look at seven items that you can purchase and have in your office that can improve your health. Some of the items are incredibly inexpensive, while some are a little on the pricy side. If you’re lucky, you might be able to expense some of them or have your boss agree to pay for the items if it can improve your health and productivity at work. Let’s punch the clock and get to work!
1. Water Bottles
Is water really a shocker to wind up on the list? If the first item on our list was a shocker, we might need to sit down and have a little talk. Water is essential in every meaning of the word. Your body is made up of primarily water, and in order for your body to perform optimally, it needs water and proper hydration to be optimized.
If you don’t want to spend the money on buying and lugging around cases of water bottles, simply take a water jug or bottle (even a shaker bottle will work) with you to work that is refillable and use the water station at work to refill it once you drink it all.
2. Sit-Stand Desk
Sitting in a chair all day can cause blood to pool, lead to muscle and joint discomfort, minimize your productivity, and zap your energy — which you need to crush your workout later. While not the cheapest item to be considering for your office, a sit-stand desk can help improve your health (assuming you’re not lazy and still sit there when you can raise it up and stand to work).
While you don’t need to stand all day with your sit-stand desk, try to go back and forth working a little while seated and then raise it up and stand. Not only will you burn a few extra calories by standing to work, but it also helps improve blood flow.
3. Ergonomic Desk Chair
Does your neck or lower back hurt by the time your workday ends? If so, the root cause is probably poor sitting posture in your desk chair. You’re not alone in feeling this way. Many people have poor posture when sitting at their desks. They hunch over at their desk, roll their shoulders forward, and cause a whole host of problems. It’s time to shop around for a better and more ergonomic desk chair.
If you really want to improve your health, combine an ergonomic desk chair with a sit-stand desk, and you have the perfect setup to get work done while not causing any issues with your health or productivity.
You could even use an exercise ball as a desk chair as an inexpensive solution. This will help you maintain proper posture to stabilize your body and not move and shift all over the place.
4. Healthy Snacks
How many times have you found yourself raiding the vending machine in the middle of the afternoon because you’re starving and craving something while at work? Let’s face it, there’s nothing healthy in there for you that will align with your health and fitness goals. The best option is to have some healthy snacks in your office that can improve your health.
Stock your desk drawers with items such as nuts, seeds, protein powder, protein bars, RTD protein shakes, dried fruit, natural nut butters, amino acid powders, or whatever healthy snack you enjoy. In doing so, you’ll get a more nutritious option that can help fuel your body and brain to allow you to get through the rest of the workday without any further cravings.
Not only will plants add some color and pop to your office, but they can also improve your health. Best of all, they are relatively low maintenance and only require periodic water for the most part. Plants can help improve your sense of well-being, clean the air in your office, reduce the noise in your office (depending on the size of the plant and how many you have), and reduce the amount of static in the air. Add a few plants around your office and feel the difference. They won’t break the bank either.
Want to improve your health? Use your lunch break as an opportunity to take a walk and get in a little extra cardio. You don’t even need to use up your entire lunch break. Merely getting up and walking for 10-15 minutes can improve your health. Rather than sitting even longer while eating lunch, break up your day with a brisk walk. Slip off your dress shoes (or whatever you wear to work) and lace up your sneakers.
If the weather outside is nice, get out and enjoy the fresh air. It will feel good to get out of the office for a little too. You can also get some natural vitamin D by getting out into the sun. If the weather isn’t the best, walk the office halls or hit the stairs to get your heart rate up and burn some extra calories instead of being stationary all day long.
7. Resistance Bands
No time for the gym today? No problem. Resistance bands are compact and a great way to fit in a quick workout. Best of all, they won’t cost you an arm and a leg, and you can even take them with you if you go on vacation or on a business trip to help improve your health and fitness.
You can purchase the bands individually or purchase a complete set (which I would recommend). When lunchtime rolls around, grab your bands, and get in a workout. Not only will it feel good to flood your muscles with blood, but it will help you clear your head from the stress at work while also helping to improve your health. It’s a win-win.